Ok, my first TR. Lots of pics.
Me and a friend of mine couldn't get home for Thanksgiving this year, so we did what any pilots would do in such a situation.....rented a plane and just went flying.
We planned a flight to Arkansas, about 120 miles away to see mountains. Oklahoma is very flat and these were the closest mountains we could find, about 3000 ft. Perfect day to go flying. Clear skies along our route forcast, unlimited visability.
Here would be our ride for the next 3 hours.
Cessna 159RA. A great little 172. Leather seats, dual VOR's, ADF, GPS, single axis autopilot(heading), the works as far as I care for a joy flight. Anyway, my friend an Instrument rated private pilot would be taking the left seat for this flight and I would be taking alot of pictures.
So, we got our ATIS info Sierra, called ground and got our clearance to taxi to 19R, remain at or below 2500 ft, departure is on 124.0, and squak 0206. Great, a standard clearance at this airport and we're off.
Lined up on 19R
Part of the ramp after takeoff
We climbed to our initial altitude of 5500 ft and turned on course. Set up the GPS and set the autopilot. I get spoiled every time I fly this plane. Get it trimmed out good and you can not touch the controls for an entire flight. We stayed at 5500 until we got out of Tulsa's airspace after which we were told to squak VFR and have a good day. We wish Tulsa departure a good day, turn the transponder to 1200, and begin a climb to cruise at 9500 ft. We were trying to get up high to take advantage of some wind up there today. We tuned the ADF to a sports station, but there wasnt much to listen to. About halfway we would lose that station and have to listen to the engine.
Here's a lake we passed enroute.
Here's the instrument panel
Anyway, the winds were a help and our ground speed ended up being around 128kts according to the GPS. The flight RVS-H35 would not take longer than an hour at that speed. One thing I noticed on this flight is how quiet the frequencies were. RVS, the airport we took off from as of last year was the busiest airport in the state. As we taxied only one other aircraft was moving around. When on departure it seemed there were half as many airliners out. Unheard of for this area, but welcome. I guess most people are more interested in turkey.
Anyway, here's another shot out the window on the way to Arkansas.
Here we are on about a 5 mile final to H35.
And here I would estimate about a 2 mile final
It was a very small airport in the middle of nowhere. A runway with a few metal shacks I guess they call hangars on the side. Nothing interesting to see so we did a quick touch and go and decided to fly over those mountains, the entire reason for this trip.
Going Around, turning toward mountains.
Lake on top of a mountain
Another mountain shot
It was rather interesting to get a little experience flying low over mountains. You could really feel the wind coming off of them making a little turbulence. We buzzed by some houses on the tops of these mountains for a bit and decided to head back home.
For the return trip we knew it would take awhile. The same wind that got us here quick we were now gonna have to fight. We tried to climb over it, made it to nearly 13000ft, yes everyone, we took a C-172 to nearly 13000 ft...believe it! Temp was about 40 degrees up there. Anyway, it just wasn't happening. We cruised around 12500 on the return and the GPS recorded our speed as a mere 88 kts. Horrible, and would make for a long flight back. The good part about being up so high is our fuel burn was excellent, around 6-7 gph we estimated.
Here's a closed airport I spotted on the way back
Here's the view straight out.
Another lake I spotted on the way back
I tried to find someone to talk to on 123.45, but there was simply noone flying that day, as I said earlier. As the flight went on we got hungrier and hungrier and really wanted to get back. Pushing 3 hours in a plane will do that to you.
Here's tulsa as viewed from the southeast. Not much to see now, but imagine all the brown as green and you'll see how nice it looks in summer.
While I was taking those pics we contacted Tulsa approach. Got the ATIS at RVS again, Victor was current, and started decending to around 3000 ft from 12000 to continue to the airport.
Here's a tower that is situated just across a river from the airport. It's used as a major landmark in the area to find the field. On a clear day it reflects the sun really well and can be seen for 30+ miles.
We got cleared to fly to it. Enter left downwind for runway 19R and we cleared from the tower to land about 5 miles out. Once again, unheard of, but we were the only ones on frequency as far as I could tell.
About 1 mile final for 19R
About 1/2 mile final for 19R
Touched down, taxied to parking, and tied down the airport 2.9 hours on the hobbs from engine start to engine stop. Long flight for the sole purpose of seeing some 3000ft mountains. My legs hurt a little getting out, you dont realize how long you've been sitting inside a small plane until you get out. Even one with leather seats.
Anyway, hope you like my pics. Hopefully I'll write another TR next XC I take.